"As the Founding Fathers said, it was the necessary evil upon which the union was built...," said Cotton to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
July 27, 2020

You know you've stepped in some serious dogsh*t when you have to go on Fox & Friends and try to lie your way out of some boneheaded trolling of the 1619 project and the New York Times, as Jonathan Chait put it below. (See Cotton's response to Ida Bae Wells.)

Source: New York Magazine

Tom Cotton has spent the Trump era elbowing his way to the front of the line to be the future of nationalist demagoguery. He recently seized upon a rich vein of material in the 1619 Project, a provocative journalistic effort in historical revisionism published by the hated New York Times, from which Cotton has vowed to protect America’s schoolchildren.

But then, having located his political sweet spot, Cotton went too far. In an interview with the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Cotton proclaimed, “As the Founding Fathers said, it was the necessary evil upon which the union was built, but the union was built in a way, as Lincoln said, to put slavery on the course to its ultimate extinction.”

The normally robotic Cotton quickly realized that he had committed a ghastly, and perhaps even fatal mistake. Trolling the Times is the sweet spot for a Republican on the rise. Defending the necessity of slavery — even in the Trump era — is not. And so Cotton and his allies quickly launched a furious counteroffensive insisting he had not, in fact, defended the necessity of slavery. Cotton had merely attributed this view to the Founders:

Running off to Fox and Friends to insist you didn't say what you indeed said is a coward's game. Tom Cotton is signaling to his white nationalist base while gaslighting the rest of us.

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